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What I Have Learned About Social Media And Self-Publishing
Your engagement determines your success
I hate social media.
Primarily for all the reasons you would hate it too.
So many people use social media to troll others, air their dirty laundry, and tear others down.
I hate all the ads and have no control over who sees my content on social media.
Yet, social media needs to be part of your self-publishing efforts, especially if you are serious about growing a following and selling books.
There is a ton of advice out there when it comes to social media too. So, where do you turn? What do you do?
Let me share my experience.
Social Media Experiments
I have tried a lot of experimenting with social media. I have a Facebook page with over 500 followers, a Twitter account that just went over 100 followers, and an Instagram account struggling to stay above 100 followers.
One positive space is my LinkedIn, it has over 1,000 followers, which has helped, but many of them aren’t that interested in writing books, faith, or dividend investing.
My most engaged audience for social media is Facebook, oddly enough. That is where I get a lot of clicks to my articles on Medium and Substack. I even get email sign-ups there.
All this experimenting has helped me understand one true principle of social media growth.
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One True Principle of Social Media
From my experience and the different books, courses, and resources, I have found there is one truth when it comes to social media growth:
“Focus on one platform at a time, grow it to 1,000 followers, and then expand.”
This seems like good, straightforward advice to follow. But it is hard. So often, we want to be everywhere at once. Yet, it is hard, especially for all of us who create in the margins.
So, what do we do to embrace this principle?
Here are the three things I am using to embrace this principle. It is simple and easy, but it will take a little time. But I think it is worth it.
Pick one social media platform. You can have other platforms you are on sharing your content, but work to grow one platform that will have the best return. Start with the one closest to 1,000 followers.
Post consistently for 90 days. This has always helped me grow a following. And it creates an excellent habit for posting. Depending on your platform, post at least once daily for 90 days. For some platforms, it might be more.
Write it like a blog post. Not a long blog post, but one that is appropriate for the space to help you grow. Ensure you have a hook, at least one helpful point, and a call to action. This will help you grow your following and your email list.
This is it. Do this until you reach 1,000 followers. Then you can move on to growing another space.
Final Thoughts on Social Media Growth
Social media can be a slippery slope. You can get into it and grow, but it distracts your writing endeavors.
I have learned to focus on social media, like building tools. Twitter is my hammer. Facebook is my saw, LinkedIn is my level, etc.
The better we use the tools, the better we can grow a following and email list. And the more likely we will sell books when we publish them.
I am currently focusing on growing my Facebook Page to 1,000 followers.
If you haven’t checked my page, go here, follow along, and I will follow your page back!
What social media platform are you focusing on these days? Share your profile in the comments below!
J.R. Heimbigner is a #1 Bestselling Author on Amazon who loves helping people grow in their faith and help writers become authors. You can connect with him on Medium, his website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Substack!